“A group of self-proclaimed civil libertarians have launched an effort to create an OS and a set of applications that prevent computer eavesdropping and data collection, even by government agencies. The new open-source OS, dubbed “M-o-o-t,” will ship in the form of a single CD_ROM that you can boot on popular PC hardware platforms. The CD-ROM will contain the OS and a set of applications that includes an email client, word processor, spreadsheet program, graphics program, and other unspecified software.” Read the news at WinInformant.
The m-o-o-t Secure Operating System Project
2002-05-30 OS News 21 Comments
That’s going to be some neat trick. I wonder how they plan on dealing with EM radiation leakage from keyboards & monitors … are they planning on including a Faraday cage in the box with every CD, too?
(the above was, of course, purely sarcastic and not to be mistaken for anything even remotely resembling reality)
good idea, but:
1. Slow connection for online storage
2. Slow CPUs for encrypting
3. People usually don’t care about anything until it hits them very hard
Another half baked, never finished OS that doesn’t support 99.9999% of the hardware.
It would be fine. If it will be ever released and if it emulates Win32 apps.
For mail and web surfing if you don’t give away your data you will be exactly like when you make a promenade in a street, anonymous !!
(Hoo, what a dream this people had).
haha! jingy can open on bad bad pages at work. no more police?!?? we hope
does the package with the cd include a tinfoil hat? Then i might go for it but without the hat no deal.
Also i’m curious how they can make the OS the way they want and have it opensource. This would make it easier for those who want to find a way to get into it. They will be able to see all their defensive strategy and what holes the people left open. Yes i do think the best defense is not showing your weaknesses to everyone (AKA the MS approach).
Sounds like a good idea!
chicoband – it wouldn’t support not-on-moot-cd-rom-apps, it wouldn’t support a browser (read! (open your eyes, man!))
Brad – if it isn’t open source, how do you know it isn’t FBI behing all of it, how do you know that one of the programmers didn’t leave a hole for him self?
Thats the idea behind open source Brad. You WANT people to find all your holes, so you can plug them.
You must read my title in your best Dale Gribble voice. Wouldn’t Dale wonder if this OS is a security godsend, or if it’s really a government conspiracy to get us to cough up our deepest, darkest secrets? The scary thing is what if the paranoid little twerp is right?
If the source code is available, then it wouldn’t be long before a competent programmer would discover what’s going on. But what if the ISO image that everybody downloads and uses isn’t based on exactly that code? Seems to me that consumers of this product could knock themselves out with “what if” scenarios like this, and still not be 100% certain!
I think that I’ll stick to living my life so that I have nothing that I need to hide.
But what if “they” decide to illegalise what you are doing now?
I live under a democracy, so as long as I vote, I am “they”. While I could spend most of my waking hours worrying about “reds under the bed”, the Trilateral Commission and other imagined threats that have been said to be imminent for centuries (but never happen), I’ll put my faith in God and use all that saved time to do what I want to do.
If the hordes do finally take over the world, then my OS choice will probably be far down on my list of priorities. If it ever gets that bad, I can simply pull the plug.
So what you’re saying is that you passed the DMCA? And that you would abide by any other Disney sponsered legislation?
I confess I posted before I read the news on the site.
Where would you store your files online .. at the FBI site ?
Hehe…this may blow your mind, but I’m hardly affected by such legislation. I’m not a big consumer of that stuff. I can live without it. What I do use, I buy up front. If I don’t like the price, I don’t buy.
To answer your questions, I live in a democratic republic, so it’s not me personally who votes on the bills. If you know what the DMCA is, then you should know a little about the form of government that produced it?!? I vote for who I want to represent me, but that doesn’t mean that I always get my way! If I don’t participate, I cede all control to others. If I do, I still am only one voice in many. That’s why I let God take care of the hard stuff.
One of the themes behind this article is the pervasive secrecy mentality of the UK gov that has been true for 100yrs, although it is a fairly free society, the freedoms there are different from those in US, some more, some less. Even good stuff like Britains work on computers in ww2 is still or was largely secret for 50yrs after the event.
Remember Huxleys 1984, until 84 got fairly close, I was terrified of the future to come, luckily USSR collaped etc etc. The media regularly at that time (late 70s) showed bad times ahead.
Having access to some books, magazines, literature, movies, drugs in the US can & has been illegal in UK & sometimes the reverse is true.
And in France, the country so famous for art, literature, free thinking, & mathmatics, encryption technology is illegal to general population. Would I live there, maybe!
User data and encryption keys will both be stored offsite. Secure and eaves-drop safe OS, huh? My ass. If gov wants stuff from you, they raid the server farm, keys on disks included. This OS is really moot.
Use open source OSes and you’re set. FreeBSDs GEOM will allow sub-FS level sector manipulation (there’s a test encryption module which encrypts all sectors to AES-256), there you got half-way useable security.
“m-o-o-t consists of a small O/S, comms and driver software, a layer of crypto and a layer of application programs all of which boot and run from and are contained on a single multiplatform CD. All local storage (except RAM) is disabled, including hard drives, floppies, zip, jaz, CDr, CDrw etc
We haven’t written most of it yet!”
The whole concept is dumb in my book. Why be stuck using distributed data warehousing? Who is going to maintain the servers?
I’ve heard of using distributed computing where local machines utilize storage space of other users’ machines, but this was just too create ways to recover data and utilize idle cpus. For example, if your computer “dies”, you can recover everything prior to the death of your computer whether you are using the same machine or not because it was contained in bits and pieces on other computers on the distributed network, but using that to ensure security is dumb.
You are much better off using encrypted files systems…hell if it matters that much build encryption in at the hardware level.
I don’t think its a government conspiracy, I just think that these “self proclaimed” civil libertarians don’t realize that this solution of theirs could easily be used to destroy the precious liberties they are trying to defend.
It was George Orwell that wrote 1984. Huxley wrote Brave New World.
If you want to create a new OS on any reasonable timescale, the only way is to fork an existing OS, or build on top of it. I suggest OpenBSD, as this is the one that is already closest to m-o-o-t’s goals, and is also probably the most secure OS against hacking.
I don’t know how a user can store his private keys securely – if they are offsite, then at the very least he needs to store a username and passphrase in his head – what is to stop the state from demanding these? The key to the success of m-o-o-t will *not* be skill at coding, but will be careful study of RIPA-3, by a team of cryptographers and lawyers. This way, you may find a way to keep strong cryptography while staying within the letter of the law.
But who needs this anyway, except paedophiles and organised crime?